The 12 Best Face Washes For Acne Scars In 2022

Acne scars make everyone feel self-conscious about their appearance. Even after you clear your skin through diet or medication, acne scars can persist for months or even years.

There are several natural ways to get rid of acne scars which include drinking lots of water, avoiding alcohol, and making sure you eat anti-inflammatory foods. However, these natural remedies take time and many people look for quick solutions to help clear their skin.

Your skin type, the current condition of your skin, and the type of scarring are all separate variables that will determine what the best strategy is to clear your skin. The short answer is your diet and skincare products play the largest role in clearing acne scars.

There are hundreds of soaps, creams, face masks, and medications that all claim to help you get rid of acne scars. To be honest most of them are useless. I know this because I tried most of them. However, there are a few quality facial cleansers that will definitely help clear acne scars. Below I have outlined ten facial cleaners that have significantly helped me and other members of my team reduce our acne scars and keep our skin clear!

How I Reviewed Each Face Wash

Before we jump to in-depth information about each product, let me explain how I reviewed each of the face washes found in this list.

I based my evaluation on three main criteria: performance, ingredients, and skin type.

Each one of these products has been used by me, someone on the GoodGlow team, or a dedicated product tester. Each one of us used these for at least a month to observe any changes our skin went through after prolonged exposure (and in some cases, as you will see below, even longer than that.)

During this time, we paid attention to any changes or improvements in the appearance of our acne scars in areas such as the cheeks, neck, chest, back, and lower back.

We also monitored my skin for any adverse reactions, such as excessive redness, dryness, tightness, itchiness, or flakiness.

It is worth noting that none of these soaps are necessarily “better” than any of the others. Each soap is better for a particular skin type (sensitive vs. dry) or type of acne scar (ice pick, atrophic, rolling, or boxcar).

Now that you know how we reviewed each product let’s take a closer look at the ten best face washes for acne scars.

Best Face Washes for Acne Scars Summary

BestFacial Wash
OverallNatura Bissé – Facial Cleansing Gel with AHA
On a Budget (for the money)Q+A – Niacinamide Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser
Facial Washes For Atrophic Acne ScarsDr. Loretta – Gentle Hydrating Cleanser
Facial Washes For Boxcar Acne ScarsSkinCeuticals – Glycolic Renewal Cleanser
Facial Washes For Rolling Acne ScarsNeostrata – Restore Facial Cleanser
Facial Washes For Ice Pick Acne ScarsMedik8 – Gentle Cleanse
Facial Wash For Hypertrophic Acne ScarsDermalogica – Daily Microfoliant®
Antibacterial Face Wash For Acne ScarsSkinFix – Acne+ 2% BHA + Azelaic Acid + Niacinamie + AHA Cleanser
Facial Wash For Acne Scars With Sensitive SkinReplenix Green Tea Gentle Soothing Cleanser
Facial Wash For Acne Scars With Dry SkinGlytone – Mild Cream Cleanser
Facial Wach For Oily SkinNeutrogena – Oil-Free Acne Fighting Facial Cleanser with Salicylic Acid
Overall (Out of Stock)Vitaminscrub Antioxidant Infused Scrub Cleanser

Natura Bissé Facial Cleansing Gel with AHA


Features a unique blend of AHAs made up of glycolic, lactic, malic, and tartaric acid that work to gently exfoliate the surface of the skin, revealing a brighter and more even complexion.

Good Glow Score

4.7 /5 5/5 Product Rating

Key Ingredients

Aloe Vera, Antioxidants, Biotin, Caffeine, and Malic Acid


Concentrated with AHA’s, natural fruit acids that gently exfoliate the skin



Blend of Aloe Vera and Vitamin B deliver hydration to the complexion and regulate excess oil production


Clean and Refined Complexion

Oil and other impurities that are able to clog pores are eliminated

Ingredientes: Water (Aqua) , Sodium Laureth Sulfate , Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Cocamidopropyl Betaine , Cocamide DEA , Sodium Chloride , Glycolic Acid , Lactic Acid ,Sodium Hydroxide , Citric Acid , Yeast (Faex) Extract , Allantoin , Malic Acid , Tartaric Acid ,Polysorbate 20 , Styrene/Acrylates Copolymer , Sodium Lauryl Sulfate , Octoxynol-9 Magnesium Chloride , Magnesium Nitrate , Niacinamide , Ammonium Glycyrrhizate , Panthenol , Propylene Glycol , Zinc Gluconate , Caffeine , Biotin , Sodium Citrate , Fragrance (Parfum) ,Limonene , Geraniol , Hydroxycitronellal , Linalool , Citronellol , Methylchloroisothiazolinone , Methylisothiazolinone , Phenoxyethanol , Yellow 5 (CI 19140) , Red 4 (CI 14700).

Natura Bissé is a skincare brand that many estheticians and beauty therapists love and use in spas. Their products are one of a kind when it comes to providing a luxury skin-revitalizing facial.

Having worked with them for a little while, I’ve tried most of their products; however, I have a few favorites that have been staples in my skincare routine for a few years now.

The Facial Cleansing Gel with AHA being one of them is definitely one of the best face washes for acne scars I’ve ever tried.

The cleanser has a smooth gel consistency that glides across the skin like a dream, lathers nicely, and washes off without too much scrubbing.

It contains a plethora of beneficial ingredients, some of which include brightening and barrier-strengthening niacinamide, anti-inflammatory zinc, soothing aloe vera, nourishing panthenol, and moisturizing propanediol.

I’ve been using this cleanser for about two years now, and it’s one of those cleansers that actually does what it claims – brightens the skin.

Simone Sydel, Licensed Esthetician

The Facial Cleansing Gel with AHA will work best for those with normal, combo, oily, and acne-prone skin, as well as those dealing with post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, redness, uneven skin tone and texture, dark spots, and atrophic acne scarring.

The ingredients in this cleanser will not only brighten and unify the complexion but will also help exfoliation and collagen production, which is exactly what’s needed to improve the appearance of atrophic scars.

Natura Bissé Facial Cleansing Gel with AHA Pros:

  • Brightening and skin-smoothing
  • Soothing and non-irritating
  • Lasts for a long time

Natura Bissé Facial Cleansing Gel with AHA Cons:

  • Pricey

Best on a Budget (for the money):
Q+A – Niacinamide Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser


Features Niacinamide, an antioxidant that can help reduce or completely prevent acne by inhibiting lipids in our sebaceous glands and increasing ceramides which help the skin maintain optimal hydration levels and lead to improved epidermal barrier function.

Good Glow Score

4.6 /5 5/5 Product Rating


Helps promote a balanced microbiome (good bacteria), and gently exfoliate the skin.


Niacinamide (Vitamin B3)

Helps combat sebum, calm breakouts and de-clog pores


Jojoba esters

Natural alternative to microbeads


Skin Types

Breakout-prone, stressed and congested skin types

Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Aqua (Water), Niacinamide, Decyl Glucoside, Coco-Betaine, Glycerin, Xanthan Gum, Jojoba Esters, Inulin, Glycerin, Levulinic Acid, Sodium Levulinate, Sodium Gluconate, Fructose, Citric Acid, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate

Q+A is a skincare brand that specializes in making high-quality yet super-affordable products.

The brand became famous after dropping their Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Cleanser targeted towards dry and dehydrated skin, which I personally loved, but they have since come out with another banger specifically formulated for combo, oily, and acne-prone skin.

The Niacinamide Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser is a gel cleanser that contains jojoba esters, which are super-gentle microbeads that provide mild physical exfoliation without irritating the skin.

Once your skin barrier is strengthened, your skin will have an easier time dealing with issues such as redness and sensitivity, but it will also be more resistant to irritation and inflammatory conditions such as acne and rosacea.

Additionally, a strong skin barrier will also have an easier time dealing with the aftermath of acne, and issues such as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation will tend to fade faster than if the skin barrier was compromised. I recommend this cleanser to all readers who are looking for a budget-friendly option.

Lastly, the Niacinamide Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser also contains inulin and fructose, which are ingredients extracted from chicory roots and help balance the skin’s microbiome (the good bacteria living on the skin) by forming a defensive layer that will protect against environmental pollutants and external pathogens.

All in all, the Niacinamide Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser is an excellent option for those dealing with pigmented or discolored acne scarring and are looking for something efficient on a budget.

Q+ A Niacinamide Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Contains a blend of barrier-strengthening ingredients
  • Works best on discolored or pigmented acne scarring

Q+ A Niacinamide Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser Cons:

  • None

Best Facial Wash For Atrophic Acne Scars:
Dr. Loretta – Gentle Hydrating Cleanser


Contains ingredients such as peptides that help improve collagen production and skin hydration, as well as chamomile extract that nourishes and soothes redness and repairs irritated skin.

Good Glow Score

4.5 /5 4.5/5 Product Rating

Gentle Cleanser

Washes everything away from waterproof eye makeup to tiny pollution particles and other irritants


Detoxify and Hydrate

Features with detoxifying hydrolyzed algin and hydrates with marine peptides

Skin Type

Skin Type

Suits all skin types


Ingredient Call Outs


Water (Aqua), Sodium Cocoyl Wheat Amino Acids, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glycerin, Hydroxypropyl Guar, Ahnfeltiopsis Concinna (Red Algae) Extract, Hydrolyzed Algin, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile) Flower Oil, Zingiber Officinale (Ginger) Oil, Phenoxyethanol.

Key Ingredients:
MARINE PEPTIDES – boosts hydration
HYDROLYZED ALGIN – absorbs pollution particles
CHAMOMILE & GINGER – soothes irritation

Atrophic acne scars are a type of scarring that appears in the form of indentations or depressions in the skin.

They are often caused by severe acne that has led to a loss of collagen, either due to the severity of the inflammation itself or by self-harming, such as picking and scratching the inflamed areas.

Finding a face wash or any skincare product that will help get rid of them can be very tricky since they respond best to professional treatments such as dermal fillers, lasers, or microneedling.

However, their appearance can definitely be improved with the right skincare, and this includes using a good facial wash.

Removing all potential irritants from your skincare regimen is extremely important when improving and getting rid of atrophic scarring. Once the inflammation is gone, the skin can repair itself and fill out the indentations through collagen production.

Additionally, the Gentle Hydrating Cleanser has a milky, non-foaming formula that repairs the skin instead of stripping its natural moisture barrier and leading to more irritation.

It’s an excellent morning or evening cleanser for all skin types, and it can be used even by extremely sensitive and reactive skin as well as those prone to inflammatory conditions such as rosacea.

Dr. Loretta Gentle Hydrating Cleanser Pros:

  • Non-foaming consistency
  • Gentle and non-irritating formula
  • Helps repair the skin barrier by hydrating the skin and keeping it nourished

Dr. Loretta Gentle Hydrating Cleanser Cons:

  • Some users have expressed dissatisfaction with the non-foaming consistency of the cleanser

Best Facial Wash For Boxcar Acne Scars:
SkinCeuticals – Glycolic Renewal Cleanser

SkinCeuticals – Glycolic Renewal Cleanser

The Glycolic Renewal Cleanser is a fantastic option for those dealing with boxcar scars as it contains a high concentration of glycolic acid, which is an AHA that’s known for its ability to brighten the complexion, and help the dead skin cells shed from the skin’s surface faster.

Good Glow Score

4.5 /5 4.5/5 Product Rating


Exfoliates with a dual-acid blend while effectively cleansing impurities and long-wear makeup without stripping the skin of moisture.

Protecting Skin

Effective Ingredients

Contains 8% glycolic free acid value, brightening phytic acid, refreshing aloe barbadensis leaf extract, and hydrating glycerin


Skin Improvement

Features a free acid value of 8% glycolic acid to promote cellular turnover


Ingredient Callouts

Non-comedogenic, paraben-, synthetic-fragrance-, dye-, alcohol-, and soap-free

Aqua / Water / Eau, Glycolic Acid, Coco-Glucoside, Propylene Glycol, Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Glycerin, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Sodium Hydroxide, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Phytic Acid, Sodium Chloride Phenoxyethanol, Dipropylene Glycol, Coconut Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Salicylic Acid, Chlorphenesin, Ethylhexylglycerin, Boswellia Serrata Gum, Cymbopogon Schoenanthus Oil, Citral, Citric Acid, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Tocopherol

The Glycolic Renewal Cleanser by SkinCeuticals is an exfoliating cleanser that contains a blend of glycolic and salicylic acids to help brighten the complexion, improve clarity, and smooth the skin’s surface.

The cleanser has a unique texture and comes out of the tube in a very concentrated gel form that feels delicate, smooth, and non-sticky.

It also has a faint fresh scent that doesn’t linger for a long time, but it adds to the overall experience.

When in contact with water, the formula will turn into a luxury foam that’s not too thick or foamy. Instead, it’s a soapy, lightweight texture that feels refreshing on the skin and cleanses off with ease.

Additionally, the cleanser contains glycerin, which is a humectant that helps attract moisture to the skin and keeps it hydrated, as well as soothing aloe vera leaf juice extract that helps subside redness and irritation.

This action will provoke newer cells to emerge from the deeper layers of the skin and fill out some of the indentations left from severe acne.

Glycolic acid can help synthesize collagen, which will further help improve the appearance of boxcar acne scars on the skin’s surface.

Lastly, glycolic acid is an excellent ingredient for pigmented scarring that can help improve post-inflammatory discoloration and hyperpigmentation.

SkinCeuticals Glycolic Renewal Cleanser Pros:

  • Free from drying and irritating components such as fragrance and alcohol
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Improves hyperpigmented and boxcar acne scars

SkinCeuticals Glycolic Renewal Cleanser Cons:

  • Some might find it expensive

Best Facial Wash For Rolling Acne Scars:
Neostrata – Restore Facial Cleanser


Formulated with 4% gluconolactone, a PHA (polyhydroxy acid), which is the gentlest exfoliating acid compared to AHAs and BHA with the ability to exfoliate the pores and clear out the gunk that’s causing an overgrowth of bacteria and yeast such as Malassezia.

Good Glow Score

4.5 /5 4.5/5 Product Rating

Gentle and Effective

Soap-free face wash that delicately cleanses and exfoliates without drying or stripping the skin


Skin Concerns

Sensitive skin, or after procedures such as microdermabrasion and chemical peels

Protecting Skin


Formulated with 4% Gluconolactone, a Polyhydroxy Acid (PHA) that helps to strengthen skin’s protective barrier and reduce redness



s a natural humectant, it will promote well-hydrated skin

Aqua/Water/Eau, Gluconolactone, PEG-80 Sorbitan Laurate, Triethanolamine, Polyquaternium-10, PropyleneGlycol, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Glycine, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Laureth-13 Carboxylate, PEG-150 Distearate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate, Sodium Chloride, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben.

The Restore Facial Cleanser by Neostrata is a soap-free, non-foaming cleanser that’s extremely gentle on the skin and works to improve concerns such as post-inflammatory discoloration, texture, and uneven skin tone.

I love using Restore as a morning cleanser because it’s so gentle and won’t strip the skin barrier of its natural protection known as the acid mantle. Additionally, it always leaves my skin feeling fresh, clean, and ready for the next step in my morning skincare routine.

Stephanie Nera, Licensed Pharmacist

Now for the best part – acne scarring. This cleanser works particularly well on hyperpigmentation and post-inflammatory redness; however, due to the collagen-building potential of PHA, it’s also an excellent option for those who are dealing with uneven skin texture, such as indentations in the skin known as rolling acne scars.

Neostrata Restore Facial Cleanser Pros:

  • It contains PHA that improves discolored and atrophic acne scarring
  • Gentle and suitable for dry and sensitive skin

Neostrata Restore Facial Cleanser Cons:

  • It’s a non-foaming cleanser, so it might leave residue behind if not washed off properly

Best Facial Wash For Ice Pick Acne Scars:
Medik8 – Gentle Cleanse

Medik8 - Gentle-Cleanse

To improve the appearance of ice pick scarring, this cleanser is gentle enough and won’t irritate the skin so that the skin can focus on healing and repairing instead of dealing with active inflammation.

Good Glow Score

4.3 /5 4.5/5 Product Rating

Replenished Hydration

Natural glycerin works to hydrate the upper layers of the skin, providing a nourishing after-feel.


Antioxidant Protection

Rosemary leaf oil soothes the skin, leaving the complexion feeling comforted.


Sensitive Skin

Foam leaves the complexion feeling refreshed, hydrated and soft to the touch.


Gentle yet Effective

The mild formula works to gently lift impurities and dirt from the skin to be rinsed away with ease.

Water, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glycerin, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate, Sodium Cocoamphoacetate, Coco-Glucoside, Decyl Glucoside, Yucca Vera Leaf/Root Extract, Benzyl Alcohol, Citric Acid, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Oil, Phenoxyethanol, Dehydroacetic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Ethylhexylglycerin.

Ice pick scarring is a type of atrophic scarring that’s notorious for being difficult to treat.

This is because ice pick scarring, although looking like an enlarged pore, actually goes much deeper into the skin than both boxcar and rolling acne scars.

And although this type of scarring responds best to professional treatments such as micro-needling and laser therapy, it doesn’t mean that it can’t be improved with skincare products.

This is why I picked Medik8 Gentle Cleanse as the best face wash for ice pick scarring, as it has a soothing and instantly calming effect on the skin.

The Gentle Cleanse is carefully made out of mild cleansing agents that gently dissolve impurities on the skin as well as glycerin to help the skin bind onto and hold moisture and rosemary leaf oil that instantly soothes the skin leaving the complexion looking fresh, clean, and comforted.

The Gentle Cleanse has a light foamy consistency that dissolves with ease and doesn’t need a lot of scrubbing and friction to be removed.

I also love how refreshing this cleanser feels and how it leaves my skin feeling comfortable as opposed to some drying foam cleansers that tend to leave my skin feeling stretched and dried out.

It’s also an excellent daily cleanser if you want to give cleansers with active ingredients a break.

The Gentle Cleanse is also suitable for sensitive skin and those dealing with rosacea and dermatitis.

Medik8 Gentle Cleanse Pros:

  • Hydrating and nourishing
  • Suitable for sensitive and reactive skin
  • Foamy consistency that washes off easily

Medik8 Gentle Cleanse Cons:

  • None

Best Facial Wash For Hypertrophic Acne Scars:
Dermalogica – Daily Microfoliant®


Hypertrophic acne scars need physical exfoliation to improve their appearance. When mixed with water, the cleanser turns into a creamy paste that gently sloughs away dead skin cells, revealing fresher and smoother skin underneath.

Good Glow Score

4.9 /5 5/5 Product Rating


Exfoliates skin while visibly brightening, smoothing texture, and clearing clogged pores.

Skin Type

Skin Type

Normal, Combination, and Oily


Skincare Concerns

Pores, Uneven Texture, and Acne and Blemishes

Clinically Proven

Ingredient Callouts

Free of parabens, vegan, gluten-free, cruelty-free, and comes in recyclable packaging.

Microcrystalline Cellulose, Magnesium Oxide, Sodium CocoylIsethionate, Colloidal Oatmeal, Disodium Lauryl Sulfosuccinate, Sodium LauroylGlutamate, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Starch, Hydrogenated Coconut Acid, Allantoin, Papain, Salicylic Acid, Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract, Camellia SinensisLeaf Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, PCA, PopulusTremuloidesBark Extract, Cyclodextrin, Sodium Isethionate, Lauryl Methacrylate/Glycol

-Papain Enzymes and Salicylic Acid: Draw out excess oil, clear clogged pores, and smooth the look of skin.
-Rice Bran-Derived Phytic Acid: Gently exfoliates to visibly brighten and balance uneven skin tone.
-Colloidal Oatmeal: Calms skin, reducing the appearance of redness and irritation.

Hypertrophic acne scars are raised, thickened scars that can result from both inflamed and non-inflamed acne lesions.

These types of scars are notoriously difficult to treat as they don’t respond well to topical treatments such as serums and creams.

The Daily Microfoliant® is a rice-based powder cleanser designed to be used as the first step in your skincare routine (or after makeup removal.)

Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant® has been a part of my routine for quite some time now, and I love using this cleanser because it’s gentle and doesn’t irritate my skin. Also, as someone whose skin is extremely prone to blackheads, whiteheads, and uneven skin texture, I have never tried anything that clears these up as fast as this cleanser.

Ashley Wilson, Certified Personal Trainer

The cleanser contains papain and salicylic acid to help with the removal of dead skin cells as well as prevent future breakouts.

Additionally, soothing and antioxidant colloidal oatmeal, green tea extract, and tea tree leaf oil instantly calm the skin and prevent irritation, that’s a common issue with harsher scrubs.

Lastly, licorice root extract delivers an instant brightening effect and a unified complexion.

However, one thing to note about this cleanser is that no matter how gentle it is, it’s still a physical exfoliant, and using it daily can lead to over-exfoliation, especially if your skin barrier is already compromised.

Therefore, it’s best to use it 2-3 times a week instead, as this will give you better results minus potential irritation.

Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant® Pros:

  • Gentle physical exfoliant that’s suitable for sensitive skin
  • Helps decrease the appearance of blackheads, whiteheads, and uneven texture
  • Helps smooth out hypertrophic scarring

Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant® Cons:

  • Not suitable for active acne

Best Antibacterial Face Wash For Acne Scars:
SkinFix – Acne+ 2% BHA + Azelaic Acid + Niacinamie + AHA Cleanser


Gel cleanser packed with active ingredients that have antibacterial properties and work to destroy the overgrowth of bacteria that’s causing acne breakouts.

Good Glow Score

4.9 /5 5/5 Product Rating

pH Support

Supports healthy skin pH levels for a balanced surface microbiome.

Vegan - Clean Ingredients

Ingredient Callouts

Vegan, gluten-free, cruelty-free, and comes in recyclable packaging.


Skin Concerns

Pores, Acne and Blemishes, and Oiliness

Skin Type

Skin Type

Normal, Combination, and Oily

Salicylic Acid 2%, Aqua (Water, Eau), Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Stearyl Alcohol, Propanediol, Disodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Glycolic Acid, Bentonite, Niacinamide, Sodium Hydroxide, Azelaic Acid, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Tocopherol, Glycerin, Ethylhexylglycerin, Polydextrose, Dextrin, Amylopectin, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Chloride, Citric Acid, Potassium Sorbate, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Benzoate.

-Salicylic Acid (BHA) 2%: Decongests pores, mopping up excess oil and surface debris.
-Niacinamide 2%: Visibly minimizes pores and prevents sebum buildup.
-Azelaic Acid 1%: Fights bacteria and diminishes the appearance of post-acne scars.

This is a multi-resurfacing, deep pore cleanser with a thick gel consistency that lathers nicely and turns into a rich foam when in contact with water.

Having tried this product, I have to say that you will instantly feel the actives working on your skin.

This cleanser definitely packs a punch and tingles when applied to the skin, so you must be very careful when using it.

First of all, a little goes a long way, and as long as you lather it before applying it on your skin, even a chickpea size of product will be enough for the entire face, neck, and chest areas.

You can then use it as a cleanser and wash it off after a few seconds, or use it as a mask and leave it on the skin for longer but less frequently.

If used as a cleanser, you’d still want to use the SkinFix cleanser sparingly because the active ingredients are strong and can easily lead to over-exfoliation and irritation.

That said, this cleanser contains a combination of salicylic, glycolic, and azelaic acid alongside niacinamide and bentonite clay.

All these actives will work to balance out oil production on the skin and deliver a potent antibacterial effect deep into the pores to destroy the overgrowth of bacteria causing acne.

Additionally, glycolic and azelaic acid, as well as niacinamide, are potent melanin inhibitors, meaning the cleanser can also help improve post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and redness left on the skin after acne has healed.

So, it’s a good option for someone who has oily and acne-prone skin but also deals with discoloration and pigmented scarring left from old acne.

The SkinFix cleanser also contains a few soothing and antioxidant ingredients, including green tea extract and vitamin E; however, you should still watch out for signs of dryness when using it.

Lastly, I also love using this cleanser on other areas where I tend to break out, such as my back and chest, and it always works wonders on a new dark spot left from a breakout.

SkinFix Acne+ 2% BHA + Azelaic Acid + Niacinamide + AHA Cleanser Pros:

  • Strong and effective
  • It can be used on body acne
  • A little goes a long way

SkinFix Acne+ 2% BHA + Azelaic Acid + Niacinamide + AHA Cleanser Cons:

  • Not suitable for ultra-sensitive skin
  • It can sting if overused

Best Facial Wash For Acne Scars With Sensitive Skin:
Replenix Green Tea Gentle Soothing Cleanser


Formulated with calming and antioxidant ingredients such as green tea polyphenols, white tea extract, and chamomile extract that help soothe and nourish the skin while leaving it cleansed, fresh, and comfortable.

Good Glow Score

4.7 /5 5/5 Product Rating


Green Tea Polyphenol Technology and medical-grade Vitamins A, C, E, work together to help minimize free-radical damage.


Includes CoQ10

Medical-grade, stabilized, and highly potent CoQ10 helps fight against free radicals and minimize the visible signs of aging.


Skin Type

Ideal for highly sensitive and post-procedural skin



Paraben Free, Gluten Free, Cruelty Free, Oil Free and Fragrance Free

Purified Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Cocamide MEA, Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate, PEG-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Polyquatenium-7, PEG-12 Dimethicone, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Polyphenols, Camellia Sinensis (White Tea) Leaf Extract, Caffeine, Panthenol, Soy Isoflavones, Chamomile Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract, PEG-150 Distearate, Phospholipids, Tocopheryl Acetate, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Retinyl Palmitate, Ubiquinone (Coenzyme Q10), Phenoxyethanol, Caramel, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid, Disodium EDTA.

The cleanser has a creamy gel consistency that quickly turns into a rich, non-foamy lather when in contact with water.

It’s also free of fragrance and drying alcohols, making it an excellent option for those dealing with ultra-sensitive skin or a compromised skin barrier.

Additionally, the Green Tea Gentle Soothing Cleanser contains a brightening complex known as ubiquinone that acts as a barrier-repairing antioxidant and a brightening agent to help even out discoloration and unify the complexion.

Replenix Green Tea Gentle Soothing Cleanser Pros:

  • Provides an ultra-calming and nourishing effect on the skin
  • Suitable for extremely sensitive skin and compromised skin barrier
  • Has an anti-aging and skin-brightening effect

Replenix Green Tea Gentle Soothing Cleanser Cons:

  • None

Glytone Mild Cream Cleanser is an excellent option for those dealing with dry, damaged, and compromised skin.

The cleanser has a milky, non-lather consistency that thoroughly cleanses the skin, removing makeup and impurities accumulated on the skin after a long day out.

What I like about this cleanser is how gentle and efficient it is. As an esthetician, I have to admit that sometimes I struggle to find a daily cleanser that contains strong actives but is gentle enough not to dry out and irritate the skin at the same time.

And this cleanser covers that!

The Mild Cream Cleanser is suitable for daily use, even though it contains glycolic acid, and can even be used by mature, compromised skin without any issue.

The only drawback I found was that, due to its non-foamy consistency, it could leave a residue behind, so you have to make sure to rinse it off thoroughly before continuing with the next step in your skincare regimen.

Glytone Mild Cream Cleanser Pros:

  • Extremely gentle and suitable for sensitive and compromised skin
  • High-strength glycolic acid to improve scarring and the overall complexion

Glytone Mild Cream Cleanser Cons:

  • It doesn’t lather and can leave a residue behind if not washed off properly

Best For Oily Skin:
Neutrogena – Oil-Free Acne Fighting Facial Cleanser with Salicylic Acid

Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Fighting Facial Cleanser with Salicylic Acid Acne

In this daily acne face wash, the active ingredient salicylic acid is combined with other ingredients to clean deep into pores for clearer skin and prevent acne breakouts. MicroClear Technology, which has been clinically proven, helps clear up breakouts and blackheads while preventing future ones.

GoodGlow Score

4.6 /5 5/5 Product Rating


This daily acne face wash also rinses clean without over drying or irritating the skin to help unclog pores and treat acne even before it emerges

Protecting Skin

Oil-Free & Non-Comedogenic

Features a clinically proven MicroClear technology to help boost delivery of salicylic acid, an acne medication to help clear up acne, pimples and blackheads



MicroClear Technology contains only the essential ingredients you need with no added fragrances


Skin Type

Oily & Acne Prone

Active ingredient Salicylic Acid 2% Purpose Acne Treatment Inactive ingredients Water, Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Chloride, PEG-80 Sorbitan Laurate, Benzalkonium Chloride, Disodium EDTA, C12-15 Alkyl Lactate, Fragrance, Cocamidopropyl PG-Dimonium Chloride Phosphate, Propylene Glycol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Citric Acid, Sodium Hydroxide, Yellow 5, Red 40

Following the removal of your cosmetics, wash your face to remove dirt and oil that has accumulated over time. Next, use Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash to thoroughly cleanse your face of residue and oil accumulated over time. 

A foaming wash like Cetaphil PRO DermaControl Oil Remover would also be an excellent cleanser for daily use, as it’s gentle on the skin and doesn’t over-dry. Again, remove all of your makeup before using this product. Finally, saturate your skin with your favorite lotion to keep it hydrated. 


  •  Oil-free
  •  Daily use 
  •  It won’t clog pores


  • Over-drying may occur

Features to Consider for Face Wash for Acne Scars

Best Overall Cleanser For Acne Scars – Out of Stock
CLEARSTEM – Vitamin Scrub Cleanser for Acne-Prone Skin

The main active ingredient in the Antioxidant-Infused Scrub Cleanser is vitamin C, which helps to brighten the skin and protect it from environmental damage in addition to evening out the pigmentation of dark spots.

GoodGlow Score

5 /5 5/5 Product Rating

Effective Formula

Formulated with vitamin C, green tea, and bamboo particles to gently polish the skin, removes dead skin cells, and unclogs pores

Skin Type

Great for all skin types

Dry & sensitive skin should only use 2x per week to start


Hemp Extract, Vitamin C, and Bamboo

bamboo particles act as a polish to resurface the skin and keep pores clear while allowing Vitamin C to penetrate and brighten


Clean Ingredients

No hormone disruptors, no toxins, cruelty free, gluten free, vegan, and silicon free

  • Hemp Extract – Exfoliating is key for acne-prone skin, but it’s very important to use a very gentle exfoliator. The hemp extract in VITAMINSCRUB is rich in skin-nourishing, acne-safe fatty acids that both soothe and hydrate inflamed skin.
  • Vitamin C – Vitamin C has strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which helps reduce skin redness that’s caused by acne breakouts. Vitamin C works to brighten skin complexion and even skin tone.
  • Bamboo – The environmentally-friendly bamboo particles in VITAMINSCRUB work to gently slough off dead skin cells and polish the surface of the skin. Bamboo also works to clarify impurities and supports skin oxygenation.

Water/Aqua, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Extract or Juice*, Propanediol, Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Bambusa Arundinacea (Bamboo) Stem Extract, Glycerin, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Sodium, Cocoyl Glycinate, Cocamide MIPA, Capryloyl/Caproyl Methyl Glucamide, Lauroyl/Myristoyl Methyl, Glucamide, Sclerotium Gum, Arthemis Nobilis or Chamaemelum Nobile*, Ascorbic Acid, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Extract*, Cannabis Sativa (Hemp) Seed Oil, Capsaicin, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Extract, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Fruit Extract, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Seed Extract, Citrus Reticulata (Tangerine) Peel Oil, Citric Acid, Chromium Oxide Green, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract*, Hesperidin, Hippophae Rhamnoides (Sea Buckthorn) Seed Oil, Jojoba Esters, Lactic Acid, Lavandula Angustifolia Oil*, Mangifera Indica (Mango) Fruit Extract, Ormenis Mixta, Chamaemelum Mixtum, or Ormenis Multicaulis*, Panthenol, Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate. Certified Organic*

The VITAMINSCRUB Antioxidant-Infused Scrub Cleanser is our top pick for reducing the appearance of acne scars. Clearstem’s Vitamin scrub is a gentle gel cleanser carefully designed to help cleanse and exfoliate the skin without upsetting its delicate balance. It is our top pick for reducing the appearance of acne scars because of its unique combination of antioxidants, skin-soothing ingredients, and natural exfoliants

In addition to reducing the appearance of acne scars and discoloration CLEARSTEM’s Vitaminscrub helps remove dead skin cells and promotes a more even skin tone regardless of skin type. 

Other key ingredients include panthenol and green tea extract, which help soothe the skin and relieve irritation caused by inflammatory acne. The scrub’s other key ingredient is bamboo particles, which are responsible for the tiny spheres inside the gel that works on polishing the skin and scrubbing away makeup, dirt, and impurities that might be lingering on the surface after a long day.

This will give an instant resurfacing effect and leave the skin looking and feeling fresh, clean, and supple.

CLEARSTEM’s Vitaminscrub is suitable for all skin types but is particularly beneficial for those with acne and acne scars along with dull skin, uneven skin tone, and rough texture, 

I personally use the antioxidant-infused scrub cleanser 2-3 times a week and recommend that to most people for the best results.

At this pace, a single bottle should last around 2-3 months, making it an affordable and effective option for targeted skin concerns.

Clearstem Vitamin Scrub Pros:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Moisturizing
  • Does not stretch, cut, or tear pores

Clearstem Vitamin Scrub Cons:

  • Frequently out of stock

The pH of the Face Wash

One thing to check is the pH of the face wash. A high pH can cause your skin to become dry and flaky, making acne scars worse. 

You want to aim for a face wash that has a pH of around five. pH levels have a huge impact on the health of your skin and should not be taken lightly. You can find out the pH of your face wash by checking the label. 

If you are unsure about what kind of face wash to buy, I recommend talking with a dermatologist or esthetician to help you find one that will work best for your skin type and the severity of acne scars.

If it Contains Benzoyl Peroxide

Benzoyl peroxide has a high concentration of Benzoyl peroxide to help prevent the formation of new acne and reduce redness from already existing lesions. 

It also helps reduce wrinkles because it exfoliates your skin and kills bacteria that cause breakouts. 

This will be great for those who have mild or moderate acne scarring issues because you can apply this daily on problem areas without irritating your skin too much. However, it can be drying, so it is best to apply this at night rather than in the morning.

If it Features Glycolic Acid

Glycolic acid is the most effective ingredient in skincare products for treating acne scars. It works by exfoliating and removing dead skin cells to make room for new, healthy ones. 

However, you should also look for products that include other natural ingredients such as green tea extract, ginseng, and konjac root. 

This is very important because repairing damaged skin is a process that takes time. To add to this, keeping your skin clean and hydrated will also help in the healing process. Plus, you can use face washes that contain salicylic acid to prevent new breakouts.

If It Contains Salicylic Acid

Salicylic acid is ideal for exfoliating purposes. If you are dealing with lots of dead skin salicylic acid can help remove the dead cells without inflaming the pores. It’s great for people with excessive sebum production. If you have very sensitive skin you should exercise caution with salicylic acid. Although it does remove dead skin cells salicylic acid can cause dryness and irritation if used too frequently. If you are considering using a skincare product with salicylic acid start by using it every other day for two weeks in order to make sure your skin can handle it.


Now that you have read this blog post, you know that face wash is essential for maintaining the health of your skin. However, combining these facial cleansers with a healthy low sugar diet is the best way to keep your skin healthy and clear long term.

Facial washes differ significantly based on the chemicals, preservatives, and natural ingredients fused in the manufacturing process. Generally, soaps with more preservatives will have a longer shelf life, whereas soaps made of completely natural ingredients will deteriorate faster.

Remember that you should always use a gentle cleanser when washing your face, especially if you have sensitive skin. If you have any questions, contact your dermatologist for more information.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Acne Scars Permanent?

Acne scars are not permanent. They will fade with time and patience, but it is possible to speed up the process by using a face wash for acne scars that contain glycolic acid or vitamin C.

Are Acne Scars Dead Skin?

No, they are not dead skin. Instead, they are fresh scars on the skin left behind after acne has healed and new skin cells have grown over them.

Why do I get Acne Scars So Easily?

This is likely due to poor skincare and a lack of knowledge on properly taking care of your skin during acne flares. Popping pimples can also cause scars, so avoid this as much as possible.


Need more help? Ask our team!

I’ve helped over 2,500 people clear their acne naturally. If you cannot easily find an answer to your question on the website, please reach out to me by email ([email protected]) or send me a message on Instagram or Twitter. I will reply within 24 hours.

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sam wood is GoodGlow's Chief Editor
Analyzed by Sam Wood

Hi I’m Sam Wood. I’m the chief editor, lead acne expert, and health coach behind GoodGlow. I’m also an author of one of the top selling acne books on Amazon, a husband, father of two, and a pretty good cook! I’m so glad you found GoodGlow and hope the information I have spent the last 10 years cultivating will help you clear your skin and improve your overall health. I began experiencing acne breakotus as a sophomore in high school, but unlike most of my friends, my acne actually got worse as I got into my 20s. I exercised regularly, ate healthy (or so I thought) and spent hundreds of dollars a month on high end skincare products and supplements to help clear my skin. Despite these measures my acne breakouts and scarring only got worse as the years wore on. This greatly wore on my self confidence and mental health. Simple things like taking pictures or going out with a large group made me feel self conscious. So I avoided these situations whenever I could help it. As a last ditch effort I decided to try an extremely restrictive diet recommended by a close friend with an autoimmune disease. After following this diet for about two months my skin started to clear for the first time in over 8 years. The good news is that this restrictive diet is not actually necessary for 99% of people to permanently clear their skin, and over the course of a few months I was able to add back about 90% of my “normal diet”. After clearing my skin I spent the next 4 years self experimenting on myself with different diets, supplements, skincare products to try and find a pattern for what was triggering my acne breakouts. I even tried different meditation, ice baths, and accupuncture to try and isolate the root cause of the breakouts. In the end I realized that an extremely restrictive diet was not necessary for clear skin. The most important thing to do is to avoid inflammatory foods in your diet. Some common examples of this are fried foods, alcohol, sugar, and dairy. Most impoirtantly I stopped reading trendy websites for skincare advice and began reading medical journals authored by dermatologists and nutritionists. Although the information in the articles was great the information was not easily understandable to most readers (including me). I spent hours dissecting individual posts and looking up terms I did not understand. Over the next 6 months I gradually began to understand these journals and started self experiemting some of the research on myself. After experiencing quite a bit of success personally, I started sharing my research on forums and with close friends struggling with acne. When I shared the research it was in easy to understand, plain English. Everyone I talked to loved what I had to say and kept asking more and more questions. So I decided to start a blog so I could just send someone a link when they asked a question instead of rewriting something I had sent 100 times before 😅 While the same directional principles apply to everyone, acne is very personal and should be treated on an individual basis. That’s ultimately why I created GoodGlow. To help everyone reverse engineer the root cause of their acne and clear their skin permanently. To date I’ve helped over 2,500 people clear their skin using a natural, holistic approach. If you are unable to find an answer to your question in any of the articles my team has written please reach out and I will do my best to guide you to the proper information and resources so you can make a thoughtful, informed decision. Read more of Sam's articles.

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FREE Clear Skin Blueprint

Get the Diet + Supplement Blueprint and start your journey towards clear skin today!

- Food To Eat Guide
- Foods to Avoid Guide
- Meal Balance and Shopping Guide
- Supplement Guide